From top to bottom and beyond, there’s a lot to consider about the new lockers you’re planning! Bases are yet another important element for you to consider.
Most new lockers are installed on top of a base, something that sits between the locker and the floor. This is done primarily to keep harsh chemicals in floor cleaners from wearing down the locker’s finish, and to prevent excess water after mopping from seeping into the locker cracks.
The typical base is either four or six inch high, which is not only ideal aesthetically but functionally as well. Bases lift the locker a little higher to make access easier for the user and it keeps the door from swinging too close to the floor, preventing scratches to the surface or any scraped shoes.
Built-In or Manufacturer-Made Bases
There are two ways to construct a base for your lockers. Contractors or an installation crew can build bases once on-site, or the locker manufacturer can design a base to match the locker and have it preassembled.
● Concrete Masonry Unit (CMU) – A smooth slab of concrete poured on-site and leveled by the installation crew.
● Wood – A continuous base with a plastic protective coating. While less expensive compared to the concrete, this material will not last as long and will be less substantial.
Two kinds of metal bases can be made by the locker manufacturer:
● Continuous Zee Base – Crosses over underneath the locker in a Z-shape, which is bolted to the locker, which is then bolted to the floor and to the wall. This feature will be shipped in pieces with the locker.
● Welded Integral Base – A four-sided metal piece is bent and formed into a frame that is then welded to the bottom of a locker unit. It’s because of this that it can only be combined with a fully welded locker. It’s sized to match the lockers, painted with the locker at the factory, and arrives at the job site completely assembled.
The welded integral base makes installation time a lot quicker, requiring an install team to spend less time at the job site. It’s also more sturdy, and knowing the manufacturer has carefully constructed this base gives users further confidence in its dependability.
If both the manufacturing and installation process are done correctly, then both the Z base and the welded base should be equally sturdy. Costs for both bases are comparable, as the welded base costs a little more, but the on-site installation work of a Z base will likely cause an increase in expenses.
Generally, it will cost much less for the manufacturer to form or weld a part than it will to hire a team to pour a concrete base. For any type of base, the installation team must carefully check for smooth leveling and compensate for any unevenness.
Other Details for Locker Bases
For graded floors with a drain, Z-bases or welded bases should never be used, and installers should only pour a concrete base for any floor that cannot be made level.
Most hallway lockers are knockdown lockers, which may have legs, made from pieces of angle iron. This stilted look means that users can see underneath the lockers and that it can be easy for debris to accumulate beneath them. A closed base can prevent foreign objects from getting stuck underneath the locker and stop the accumulation of dirt.
In California and along the West Coast seismic requirements may be an important aspect to consider. Any locations that are threatened by earthquakes should rely on concrete bases to anchor the lockers more securely.
Not all job sites have tons of time available for locker installation, which can be another factor in the final decision. Continuous bases have to be cut and installed in the field, which increases the total install time. But a factory attached bases come ready to be installed, resulting in a shorter on-site installation. Check out the links below for a time-lapse video on both installations.
Ready to start planning your locker renovation for this year? Contact DeBourgh Lockers soon to ask any questions and get your ideal lockers designed and ready to go.